ATG NEWS RELEASE: Hawaii joins 20 state coalition urging congress to protect legal rights of victimized consumers

Posted on Jul 28, 2017 in Latest News

HONOLULU – Attorney General Doug Chin and Stephen Levins, Executive Director of the Office of Consumer Protection, joined a coalition of 20 states urging U.S. Senate leaders not to repeal the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) arbitration rule, which stops companies from forcing consumers to sign away their legal rights.

The U.S. House of Representatives recently passed a Joint Resolution of Disapproval that would set aside the CFPB’s rule under the Congressional Review Act. The attorneys general are asking the Senate to oppose that resolution and support consumers’ rights to go to court to assert their claims against financial institutions.

The multistate letter, led by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, was sent today to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Minority Leader Charles Schumer.

“The CFPB’s Arbitration Rule would deliver essential relief to consumers, hold financial services companies accountable for their misconduct, and provide ordinary consumers with meaningful access to the civil justice system,” the letter states.

In August, a coalition of attorneys general sent a multistate letter to CFPB Director Richard Cordray supporting the CFPB’s rulemaking and calling for the restoration of these protections for consumers.

Restrictions on participation in class action cases are routinely inserted by financial institutions into contracts for financial products such as credit cards, payday loans, and checking accounts. Many consumers enter contracts without being aware that they are relinquishing significant rights, including their rights in court.

The states that participated in this letter include California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Iowa, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Oregon, Washington, Vermont and Virginia, as well as the District of Columbia and Hawaii’s Office of Consumer Protection.

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For more information, contact:

Joshua A. Wisch

Special Assistant to the Attorney General

Phone: (808) 586-1284

Email: joshua.A.Wisch@hawaii.gov

Web: http://ag.hawaii.gov

Twitter: @ATGHIgov